Indonesian Pianist Ines Irawati

(Ines Irawati)

On Wednesday, February 14, High Desert Chamber Music’s 16th season will continue with our annual Valentine’s Day concert featuring the Aviara Trio. We had a chance to talk to Ines Irawati, the pianist of the Aviara Trio, about her childhood, growing up in Indonesia, her love of piano music and much more!

Ines grew up in Jakarta, Indonesia. Her foray into music began around three years old. To help her cope with a difficult childhood experience, her mother signed her up for a group music class at the Yamaha Music School, one of the first music schools in the country. It was there that the music teacher recognized her talent and told her mother to sign her up for piano lessons. At the age of nine, Ines was accepted into their Junior Original Concerts program. In this program, selected young students were given the opportunity to study composition and improvisation and afforded the chance to perform their own works. “I think that program alone made me into the person and the musician I am today. It gave me the space to be with other young musicians; making music, collaborating, and creating with them. We would spend hours with each other, rehearsing and performing everywhere. It was there that I found my tribe, my community.”

In demand as both a solo pianist as well as a collaborative pianist, Ines finds them both rewarding. “Doing a solo program is so satisfying as you have the freedom to explore and to create however your heart desires. But then of course, there is such a joyous feeling when collaborating with people you love and admire, to learn about them and connect with them through music.” When asked about how the Aviara Trio came about, Ines told me that she and Erin Breene (cellist) had met online (back in the days of Friendster!), became good friends, and started performing as a duo. Erin then went on to meet Robert Schumitzky (violinist, and Erin’s husband) and the rest was history! They have been a trio for almost 20 years.

When asked about some of her favorite pieces, Ines said, “I really love the process of diving into the music that I am currently working on, and they often become some of my favorite pieces during that period. For example, right now, my favorite repertoire is from this Valentine’s Day Program which we will be performing in Bend. The first half of this program is filled with delicious music like Rachmaninoff’s Vocalise and Piazzolla’s Tangos. Then the Brahms Piano Trio on the second half is so glorious and breathtaking, definitely one of the most romantic pieces of music ever written.”

Please join us on Wednesday, February 14 at 7:30pm at the Tower Theater in Downtown Bend for a decadent program featuring works by Bridge, Morricone, Rachmaninov, Piazzolla, and Brahms. There will be a pre-concert talk with Ines, Erin, and Robert at 6:45pm. This concert is brought to you by Pine Tavern Restaurant. Tickets are available through High Desert Chamber Music by phone or online.

Come hear the music!

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